New forms of employment: Developing the potential of strategic employee sharing

Recent Eurofound research highlighted the wide variety of flexible employment forms. They considerably differ regarding their implications for working conditions and the labour market, which needs to be further explored. In the current project, Eurofound focused on strategic employee sharing, an employment form in which a group of employers hires workers jointly and is jointly responsible for them.

The project explored the potential benefits and risks of strategic employee sharing for employers and employees as well as the preconditions for an implementation that brings advantages for both companies and workers. This was done by mapping the experiences in countries in which strategic employee sharing is already applied (Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Hungary).

The research concludes that the necessary conditions to encourage the establishment and further development of strategic employee sharing can be grouped into four areas: demand, supply, legal framework and institutional actors as well as operational support.

The main advantages for companies is the cost-efficient and flexible access to workers, improved HR administration and employer branding. For workers, the main advantage is access to permanent full-time positions, job and income security as well as improved employability. Potential disadvantages for employers are workflow and work organisation challenges, while workers might suffer from increased stress and less integration into the individual firms.

The report points towards a need for more awareness-raising for this employment form across Europe, the recognition of the employment model through a suitable legal framework and active support for the implementation of employer groups.

Download the report and the executive summary (published November 2016).

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